Let's work a little backwards for a minute.
Long term disability insurance and long term care insurance are two
different things. Long term disability insurance allows you to
continue to collect all or a substantial portion of your income when
you become disabled and cannot work.
Long term care insurace provides coverage for care expenses (such as
nursing or convalescent home care, or other forms of "custodial
"Long term disability, or LTD is an insurance plan intended to protect
individuals that suffer a disability from enduring large financial
loss because they have lost their ability to fulfill their job duties.
A long term disability policy allows affected individuals to continue
collecting their income for an extended period of time when they
cannot work due to the disability."
What is long term disability (LTD)?
"Long Term Care includes a wide range of medical and support services
for persons with degenerative diseases, a prolonged illness such as
cancer or a cognitive disorder. It's important to know that long term
care is not necessarily medical care but rather what is referred to as
"custodial care" or assistance with average daily living activities.
It's very difficult for people with the above illnesses to do the
things many of us take for granted every day and that is what Long
Term Care provides. It may be easiest to think of this as taking care
of a child who cannot take care of him or herself. In the case of Long
Term Care a trained professional provides these "custodial services".
What is Long Term Care?
Rates for long term care coverage vary wildly based on a number of
factors, including your age at the time of purchase, your health at
the time of purchase, and care options you choose. How much coverage
you will need will depend on your current and projected future
"Standardized long-term care policies, such as can be found for
Medicare supplement insurance, do not exist in the long-term care
market. Comparing policies is extremely difficult because companies
are selling policies with many different combinations of benefits and
What coverage is available?
PrepSmart.com estimates that there are more than 3000 different
premium levels for each person! They suggest finding an agent you're
comfortable with, and using his expertise to select the plan that is
best for you.
Entry cost increases as you get older, so it's best to purchase your
coverage as soon as possible - a premium range of $55/year for bare
minimum coverage to $1300/year for generous coverage at age 40 jumps
to a range of $80/year - $1500/year at age 50:
"Most folks want to know right away, "How much does it cost?" And no
one can answer, because for every single person there can be over 3000
different premium levels, depending on how much and what kind of
coverage you want. The LTC agent is paid to help you make the best
coverage decisions for your individual situation. Find an agent you're
comfy with, and USE that agent to help you decide."
[ NOTE: Premium range chart is on this page. ]
Premium Ranges for LTC Insurance Coverage
To find a guideline to suit your individual needs, you can customize a
plan and get a quote from the Federal Long Term Care Insurance
Program. Use Calculator Two:
FLTCIP Premium Calculators
Some things to look at when choosing coverage to suit your needs:
-- Daily Benefit: The maximum daily benefit for care received in a
Nursing Home or Alternative Care Facility. Typically, if the full
daily benefit is not needed, the difference will be carried over.
-- Length of Coverage: The daily benefit times the length of
coverage to get the lifetime maximum dollar amount.
-- Elimination Period: Synonymous with deductible period. The
amount in days that must be satisfied before the benefits are paid.
This is usually met once in the lifetime of a policy.
-- Home Health Benefit: The maximum daily benefit for care received
in one's own home. This should cover any level of care needed.
-- Inflation Protection: Automatically increases the daily benefit
each year on the anniversary of the policy. Designated to ensure the
policy one acquires retains its value over the years.
MAGA Ltd. - Long Term Care Quotes
The Consumer Law Page offers the following suggestions as well:
-- Always check with several companies and agents
-- Take your time and compare outlines of coverage
-- Understand the policies
-- Don't be misled by advertising
-- Don't buy multiple policies
-- Accurately disclosing your medical history is extremely important
-- Never pay the agent in cash
-- Write a check and make it payable to the insurance company.
-- Get the name, address, and telephone number of the agent and of the
-- If you don't receive your policy within 60 days, contact the
company or agent
-- Read the policy again and make sure it provides the coverage you
-- Reread the application you signed
This of course is just a summary. You can find the complete article
Considerations when buying a policy
You may also find these articles helpful:
What do contracts provide?
Ripe with potential for fraud
These and other articles (which thoroughly address LTC) can be found
Avoiding Fraud When Buying Long-Term Care Insurance:
A Guide For Consumers And Their Families
Richard Alexander, Editor
I hope you find this helpful! If I can be of further assistance,
please just ask for clarification. I'll be glad to help.
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